Strains such as Kush have been made notorious through songs and celebrities professing their love for the strain. Those that have experienced Kush know why it is so famous. From Tahoe OG Kush to Afghan Kush the high is memorable. Cannabis is not a new plant created in a lab but rather has been used for centuries as medicine, religious herb and for recreation. Research proves more every day how vital plant genetics are in finding the right compounds to combat illnesses and find cures. Genetics is something that isn’t often thought of when discussing the War on Drugs but it has definitely been affected by it.
Some cannabis genetics are thought to have come from Providences in China and spread throughout the Silk Road while others originate in the Middle East. There of course was the large movement through the 60s and 70s that helped spread and create new cannabis strains through people exchanging seeds and ganja.
With new genetics infiltrating the gene pool in the States new plant strains emerged. Hybrids also came out of the mix. People discovered that by crossing different strains they could breed out the undesirable traits while promoting higher potency and better growth stamina. By cross breeding not only Indica with Indica but breeding for balance we have seen hybrid strains that have the pain relief of an Indica but with the “upper” functioning high of a Sativa. Genetics play a role in growth, mold/pest resistance and of course potency.
Blueberry strains are known for their social anxiety and pain relief as well as helping with digestive disorders and have spawned notorious strains like Blue Cheese, Blue Dream, Old-Time Moonshine and Blue Haze . DJ Short created the Blueberry strain by crossing his Afghani Indica, brought by some growers from California and his Purple Thai. The female pedigree of his Purple Thai is his highly potent all-around champion, “Juicy Fruit” Highland Thai female. It packed a very sweet tropical punch and an intense high that lasted for many hours. The second plant was a Purple Thai out of Oregon, Ohio. This plant was a cross between an outstanding Highland Oaxaca Gold and a very freaky Chocolate Thai. The hybrid was very dark colored and would express a deep royal purple color at the slightest exposure to cold. The finished product was equally tasty and strong as the Juicy Fruit female.
The War on Drugs forced cannabis use underground. Cannabis began being bred for bag appeal and what would bring the best sales. Growers began looking for traits that would bring the biggest yield with the shortest flowering time. Medicinal qualities were disregarded. For decades it was thought that the compound THC was responsible for all of the effects cannabis provided. We now know of CBD which is actually responsible for pain relief and has been found to help with insomnia, anxiety and Alzheimer’s. CBD was another casualty of the war with most of today’s strains registering less than 0.5%. With the War on Drugs ongoing for over 40 years countless plants have been destroyed with the government’s actions forever destroying precious genetics.
Although cannabis has been around for thousands of years it wasn’t until the summer of 2011 that the genetics of the cannabis Sativa and Indica were mapped. We know that there are hundreds of strains that have come from the original heirloom landraces. Today many patients and citizens alike have the option of what type of relief or high they are looking for. From the euphoric highs of the Sativa to the amazing pain relief that Indicas bring the options are endless.
Everyday we have new research that is released that shows the anti-cancer properties of cannabinoids. Now more than ever we understand why we need to preserve the genetics of all cannabis plants. We know that we can use different strains to treat a wide range of illnesses and afflictions. We also know that cannabis is not a one-size-fits-all type of plant. You need to have the correct strain containing the right balance of compounds to reach the desired effects.
We have more proof than we have ever had before showing the medical benefits even on a molecular level. We are beyond smoke when taking about cannabis therapies. There are a wide range of options when talking about uses. Tinctures, edibles, concentrates, oils, topical lotion, capsules, vaporizers and more.
Support is at an historic high with medical use over 75% and legalization for adults over 21 at 50%. States that have enacted decriminalization have found favorable outcomes. States that have enacted medical statues have found large increases in tax income as well as economic growth in the communities.
If cannabis is allowed to thrive imagine the possibilities. Imagine 5, 10, 15 years from now how much we will know about genetics, compounds and treatments for cancers. Imagine all the possibilities if we could openly and safely exchange genetics and end products. How many people could find relief? How many could save their life?
It is time that we stand up and protect cannabis genetics. We need to stop the violent raids by government officials. The government needs to change their stance on cannabis therapies. Now more than ever it is time we stop the continual attacks on patients, crops and our heritage. The War on Drugs needs to end. It has been a failed war for over 40 years that has forever changed the history of cannabis. Those that have kept cannabis genetics alive even in the face of persecution and imprisonment thus passing down history should be celebrated. Urge your representative today to show support for ending the failed approach to dealing with cannabis.